Answers to 10 FAQs of Sciatica Patients in Oakland, CA

As a specific chiropractor providing sciatica relief in Oakland, CA, Dr. Melissa Crago has had many patients asking questions about their condition. After all, dealing with sciatica comes a bit tricky sometimes as it is often a misunderstood health problem. If you’re one of the thousands of people suffering from sciatica symptoms, our list of top 10 FAQS can help you manage your situation better. 

#1. Will sciatica symptoms resolve on their own?

Sciatica stems from nerve pinching or compression. Health problems like vertebral bone spurs, tumors, spinal misalignment, and other spine structure defects can cause the irritation or compression of your sciatic nerve. Unless you address the nerve compression or pinching, your sciatica symptoms will most likely continue to bug you. While you seek a lasting option for sciatica relief in Oakland, CA, you can try using temporary remedies to manage the different symptoms that you experience. 

#2. What will happen if you don’t find sciatica relief in Oakland, CA?

Often, many people would ask us what would happen if they don’t manage their condition. Will it get worse? Will it take longer to experience long-term relief from the symptoms? To that we say, it all depends on the underlying cause of your pain. For example, if your sciatica resulted from trauma or spinal injury, you likely have swelling around the affected nerve. 

Sadly, if the inflammation doesn’t go down, the protective covering of your sciatic nerve slowly deteriorates. It causes permanent nerve damage that would cause you more intense pain. Make sure to have a check up with your physician right away if you suspect sciatica so you can determine what course of action you must take to relieve it.

#3. How long does it take to see improvements in sciatica? 

It’s virtually impossible to provide you with a rough estimate on how long it would take for sciatica symptoms to go away. That’s because diagnosis tends to differ from one patient to another. Certain factors like age, other disorders or diseases, obesity, sedentary lifestyle, and smoking can add to the severity of the condition, making it harder to see significant changes. It’s best to coordinate with your primary healthcare provider or your specific chiropractic doctor to gauge your progress and explore better remedies. 

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#4. Can the symptoms recur after they go away?

Like in the case of question #1, the answer lies in the root cause of your sciatica. If yours stem from a vertebral subluxation and you rely heavily on pain medications, you’re likely to experience short-term relief. Once the effects of your pain reliever wear out, the symptoms may bother you again.

#5. Is Ibuprofen helpful in managing sciatica pain?

The short answer is yes. For a while, Ibuprofen or whatever type of pain reliever you use can help you ease your symptoms. However, if the problem originates from a herniated disc, misaligned vertebral bones, tumor, or osteoarthritis, you may need to seek other remedies if you wish to cope better. 

#6. Should you exercise when you have sciatica?

Surely enough, sciatica can cause severe discomfort and limit your movement. However, it would help if you still kept yourself physically active. Try doing simple stretches like the pigeon pose and hip flexor stretching so you can achieve sciatica relief in Oakland, CA. You can also coordinate with your physician, physical therapist, or specific chiropractor to know what other types of stretching exercises you can try, depending on the severity of your back, hip, and leg pain. This way, you can avoid physical overexertion, which may trigger worse symptoms. 

#7. Which is better for sciatica – heat or ice?

When dealing with pain, many people seem confused about whether to use a cold or hot compress. Take note that ice reduces swelling while heat stimulates blood flow. So, if you notice inflammation, it’s not a good idea to go on long hot baths. This could only cause you more severe pain that could radiate from your hips down to each of your toes. Often, it’s better to resort to using a cold compress when coping with sciatica pain.

#8. How do you manage sleeping problems when you have sciatica?

Because sciatica can affect an extensive length of your body, you may find it incredibly challenging to find a good sleeping position. As a rule of thumb, you should never sleep while lying on your stomach as it could trigger worse bouts of pain and impact your spinal health. Try sleeping on your back instead but make sure to prop a pillow behind the knees so you can relax your body and avoid accumulating pressure on the back and hips. If you prefer sleeping on your side, it’s best to place a pillow between both knees to keep your spine straight even while you rest. 

#9. Is there a connection between spine alignment and sciatica pain? 

Unknowingly, many of our patients who have sciatica suffer from mild to severe spinal alignment. It results in uneven shoulders and legs as the body tries to compensate for the faulty alignment. As a result, the sciatic nerve - which runs from the lower back to the toes - gets pressed by the bones and tissues surrounding it.  We observe this problem frequently when a person has a history of back or spinal injury. Sometimes, the triggering event such as a whiplash or sports accident happened years or decades before the sciatica symptoms started to manifest. By correcting the structural problem, you can relieve the nerve's pressure and start seeing changes to your painful and debilitating condition.

#10. What natural remedies can you use if you don’t like taking pain medications?

While pain medication comes in quite handy to provide you with short-term relief, the effects tend to wear out quickly. Fortunately, you have other natural options for easing your sciatica-caused pain, including specific chiropractic adjustments. It focuses on the structure of your spine. The procedure aims to restore the normal alignment of your vertebral column through gradual and precise adjustments. Guided by digital imaging tests, we can find the crucial points that we need to work on, so your spine can go back to what it was before your accident or injury. 

Now that we’ve answered all the top questions concerning sciatica, are you ready to seek a practical option for sciatica relief in Oakland, CA? Are you ready to know more about specific chiropractic care? If you are, you may call us at Life Chiropractic at 510-594-9994. You can also write to us via our website form.

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